Monthly Archives: July 2017

Deco birthday card

Last week I was practising drawing with my Scan’n’Cut. One of the resulting images was an Art Deco lady from the Tattered Lace Glitz and Glam USB:

I spent a while staring at her trying to decide how to colour her, then inspiration struck. Texture and colour in one, use feathers!

I have a lot of coloured feathers which were cheap in The Works, I like using them to embellish Deco style cards, but I’d never thought of using them as a more focal element.

I used Tacky Glue to draw over the dress on the image, then lay feathers over. It looked bland when I’d done, so I added a shiny bow across the waistline and I was really pleased with the result.
I wanted to keep my card elegant and Deco in style. I really liked the focal sentiments I tried last week, but I needed something more subtle.

 I got the foiling kit for my Scan’n’Cut, but hadn’t played yet. I used Brother Canvas to download and resize the flower ring, then foiled it. The foiling is really easy and I was thrilled with how it looks, although I did manage to foil my sticky mat and waste a lot of foil. Oops.

I stamped a Happy Birthday sentiment in the middle. This panel was as wide as my 7×5 card blanks, so works as a focal element.I attached the Deco lady to the right hand side of it, covering some of the foiled flowers but leaving the shape of the pattern obvious.

The paper I chose was from my First Edition Noir et Chic pad. Fairly subtle but glittery, and a 1920s style design. I didn’t want a heavy background so I decided to create two further panels, meaning that the white of the card blank was able to show through in more places and stop the card feeling too heavy.

What do you think? I’m pleased with it, especially because it’s combining new techniques


Playing with a freebie

Who doesn’t love a freebie? One of my favourite things about the Create and Craft club is the members’ gifts which are available periodically. I like that there are different things, some which I’d not buy otherwise, some which are just a real treat.

The most recent gift was a gorgeous 8×8 paper pad Raspberry Ripple from Paper Boutique. I have several trees worth of paper, but I just love it. I can spend ages just looking at my favourite collections, especially smelling them (His Lordship finds it strange, but I’ve heard lots of other crafters admit to the same). As soon as I saw the gift, it was in my basket and on its way.

My copy of the club magazine arrived a couple of days ago. It included inspiration on using the members’ gift as well as information on a discount on further Raspberry Ripple items. I decided not to buy the toppers, I have a growing collection of dies and stamps, and my underused Scan’n’Cut, so thought I’d be able to complement the papers with my existing stash.

Today was D-Day and my gift arrived. Cup of tea in hand – held well away from my precious papers – I stroked the papers and admired tge patterns. I spent a happy couple of hours playing, and here are the results:

I like using negatives where possible, i was pleased with how the papers hang together here

This was cased from one of the samples in the magazine, i changed the orientation, paper, sentiment shape and decoration. I really like this

A simple little notelet using a Tim Holtz die for a sentiment

This is my absolute. I usesd my Tim Holtz ‘beautiful’ die again. The black really seems to pop. I do like the spiral flowers, too, they’re less fussy than a lot of others

Experiments with my Scan’n’Cut

I’m ashamed to say that my Scan’n’Cut spends a lot of time sitting gathering dust. I love it, but it’s a bit too clever and daunting for me, and the mats lose their sticky very quickly (perils of being owned by a cat, his hair gets everywhere) which has cost me a few projects to my consternation. Most of what I use it for is cutting mats and layers, it’s great being able to cut perfectly with my own increments, not ones dictated by die size.

Every so often I have good intentions about using it more, often when I see it being demo-ed on Create and Craft. Today was one of those days.

First, I drew for the first time. I chose three images from the Glitz and Glam USB which I fancied as stamped images and set it to drawing them on plain white card. I tried the colouring option on the plane, it’s covered a lot of the detail link although paler than the original lines so they’re still visible. At first I was unmoved but looking at these again I am increasingly keen on the effect.

Next, I thought I’d try emulating cards I like which focus on one large sentiment, so I chose two of the preset words – Happy Birthday and Noel. I shrank them slightly from the set size, then cut them from Kanban red mirri board. 

As I was removing the cuts from the sticky mat, I realised that I real like the negatives too, so played with masking tape to keep the bits in place ready to be made into cards. 

The cut outs, I mounted on Kanban foiled sentiment card with complementary themes – more birthday words and presents. I kept the cards themselves very simple to really show off the sentiment and the shininess.

I used scraps from my inherited stash for the background for this

A very simple easel card. I mounted the Kanban sentiment card on a piece of white paper with red polka dots and then layered this onto a piece of gold card. The stopper is a scrap from the Kanban foiled card and three punched balloons.

I was chuffed with these, the big bold sentiment appealed. I had a bit of time left, I had intended to play with the machine more, but I used the negatives instead. Still simple and very shiny cards, pretty though.

Scrappy challenge

When I was making dresses and decorating cards with them, I was using my First Edition Noir et Chic paper pad. I’ve had it for years, love the patterns and glitter, and I adore all but one of the papers. As always happens with well loved pads, it’s becoming very depleted and full of unused scraps.

I set myself the challenge of using my scraps.

How to:

This card is a very simple make.

Cut a gold mat to fit a 7×5 card blank with a small border around, then layer on a piece of cream card with a 1mm border. Don’t attach it to the card blank yet.

Cut scraps to more or less the same height (I used 50mm). Don’t worry if some are a little short, it’ll be hidden. Make sure the edges are straight.

Using your card front in a landscape orientation, glue the scraps along the bottom. Make sure you keep even, straight borders – because it’s such a simple layout, any wobbles are so obvious.

Take a piece of ribbon and attach over the tops of the scraps, again being careful to keep it straight. This hides any imperfections in height. Fasten it behind the card front. Add a bow if you like them.

Attach your card front to the card blank.

Add a sentiment to the opposite side to your bow. This can be stamped or die cut. I didn’t trust myself not to smudge a stamped sentiment at the final hurdle, so I turned to my new favourite’happy birthday’ die from Trimcraft and cut it in gold.

I managed to use a very few, lots more scrap busting needed.

Dressing up cards

When I’m home alone and have a bit of time to myself, ie the housework is done or ignorable, I put Create and Craft on and spread my current project over the living room floor. Tuesday was a day of ignoring the housework (we still have forks, and we’ve both got underwear, I can get away with it). 

I was watching today and was pleasantly surprised too see Kathy from Trimcraft on with Dean, especially when my blog got a bit of a mention! I laughed all the way through the show, and was very proud that I managed to resist temptation. Kathy showed how to make origami dresses and Dean crafted along with her. I’ve made these before, and even blogged about a card with one a year back, but it’s one of the techniques which has fallen from my regular repertoire.

Inspired, I spent a happy hour making dresses. They’re so sweet, like a little wardrobe of paper prettiness, but I wasn’t sure what to do with them. I turned back to my trusty mojo booster: Pinterest.

Here are the cards I’ve been making with my dresses. 

Using Noir et Chic by First Edition, and a Trimcraft die

I love the red bow, the only addition to First Edition’s Noir et Chic papers

Using Craftwork Cards’ Antiqued paper collection

Using Craftwork Cards’ Antiqued paper collection again

One of my go-to paper pads, Antique Pinks from The Works

And two dresses spare, yet to be added to a card

Good luck card

One of my colleagues is leaving. She is Irish, so typical good luck cards with four leaf clovers or shanrocks felt inappropriate, too stereotypical. She has mainly worked nights for the past year, so when I was thinking of card ideas I thought it might be nice to nod to that. She’s also a really girlie girl.

Santoro’s Gorjuss range is a favourite of mine. I love how the girl can be used in so many ways for so many occasions. It appeals to my more Gothic, steampunk tastes, but doesn’t have to be darker like that. I have the Nightlight stamp set which seemed perfect for someone who does nights.

I teamed the stamp set with my Gorjuss Tweed papers, some dark gray card with a silver hint, and a 6×6 card blank. The sentiment was made with my Dymo label printer, and I made simple flowers from die cut circles.

How to:

1) Stamp the Gorjuss girl on white card and colour it as you like. I used my Spectrum Hours. Die cut a notebook edge to the stamped image (I used a Tim Holtz die) and tear the other edges, curling one corner up.

2) Layer a piece of paper from the Tweed papers onto a piece of gray card, leaving a small border. 

3) Tear a piece of a paler paper to the same height as your bottom layer, making this approximately 4cm wide. Attach this to the left hand side of the card front, leaving around 1cm of the darker paper visible to the left.

4) Stick the stamped image at an angle roughly central on the card front. Add a sentiment box cut from the Tweed paper stack, and a sentiment of your choice in this, at an opposite angle.

5) Attach the card front to the card blank.

6) Die cut swirls in complementary colours and stick these across the bottom left hand corner of the card. 

 7) Die cut circles in varying sizes. Cut these into spirals and roll them from outside in to form flowers. Stick these between the swirls, using the swirls as a type of foliage. Add one flower to the sentiment for interest and balance.

8) Finally, add a little silver glitter glue to each flower and create three sparkles in the bottom right hand corner. 

Sugar sweet sugar skulls

I bought a gorgeous set of Trimcraft dies recently. I wanted the unicorn more than anything, and loved the peacock, butterflies and flowers are always useful… spend justified.

There was a Mexican sugar skull die in the collection, very detailed and beautiful, but I didn’t see much use in my crafting. That was till I cut it. I love it! I’ve been adding skulls to so much.

Here is the very first card I made with my new sugar skull die. 

The die is so ornate that I wanted to keep the rest of the card very simple. I love this matt gold, a Kanban stash essential. It was one of the first things I reached for when I was trying the cuts of the dies.

 I teamed the gold skull with pink mirri board from the stash I inherited. I decided to inlay the skull, wanting it at the top rather than central, so I cut a skull from the middle of the top third (and now have a lovely pink skull for another project).

At first I was going to use a plain black card for the background, but it was lacking wow, so I dug through my stash and found this black starry card which was packaging I rescued from the recycling ages back. I glued the pink card down first, then carefully applied glue to the back of the skull and fit it in the negative space. I could have pieced the pink decorative elements back in, but I like the black showing through.

I chose a black ribbon with white edging to decorate the card, tying it across the bottom third of the card. Finally, I used my Dymo label printer to make a sentiment sticker, hola seemed appropriate.

Thyme to celebrate

Hubby took me to The Range today. I’d not been since we left Hull 4 years ago, and I have to admit I’d never been a fan. He went a couple of days back when he had an hour to fill, and came home full of stories about their crafty supplies. It’s amazing! A proper Aladdin’s cave of crafty goodness.

One of my many purchases was a 12×12 paper pad of Violent Veg. These are images I’ve seen and laughed at many a time before, I thought it would be fun to craft with. The 24 sheets (3 each of 8 designs) cost me a whole £5, so definitely a bargain. I like that there are sheets of comedic toppers with no words, sheets of patterned papers and sheets of toppers. 

I made time to have a play after tea. Several cards later I have a favourite…

Tada! How blingy and fun is this?! Apologies for the blurred photo, apparently I can get decent ones which don’t show the bling, or get the shine.

I immediately knew I wanted to decoupage this design, and the sentiment presented itself to me really easily. The finished design was less obvious to me, though.

Obviously 12×12 paper cuts to four 6×6 designs, which is great, but I find that very few card blanks are actually the size they claim to be, meaning there’s a lot of fiddly adapting the size to fit. I did cut it down, but chose an 8×8 card blank to display it. Hmmm, a lot of blank space, what to do? 

In came my trusty sequined sequin card from Create and Craft. I usually use it as little finishing touches, but I have been pushing myself out of my comfort zone and using it as backgrounds. I love how the shape of the gold sequins complements the wallpaper of the image, and it’s just so shiny!

I needed mats and layers which would emphasise the design and the fabulous sequined sequin card. Black is my favourite for this, there’s not much it doesn’t add oomph to. 

Putting the card together I chose a jaunty angle for the topper. I cut the bunch of thyme and champagne bottle from a second image, and the champagne bottle a third time, layering them up with 3d foam pads. I used Glossy Accents to pick out the label and the foil of the champagne bottle.

I have a Dymo label printer which is one of my favourite toys.I used it to create my sentiment – thyme to celebrate. The black tape picks out the black layering which was an added bonus. Finally I decided to really go all out with the sparkle and added a gold sequin to the circles on the wallpaper every 3 rows, lots of effort but I like the effect.

This paper pad is going to have so much use!

Can a flamingo be a masculine card decoration?

I am sorry I’ve not posted in a while, life has caught up with me a bit. Hubby and I had a failed fertility treatment back at the beginning of June and it really got me down, had another last week so fingers and everything crossed and taking extra good care of the maybe baby till Wednesday when we find out if it worked.

I have been crafting, and reading your posts, just not felt up to sharing.I’ve got one quick, simple card to show you today, and a couple of pics I hope may make you smile.

I recently bought a little bundle of Trimcraft dies from Create and Craft. This fabulous flamingo, and the happy birthday sentiment, were included. I know that flamingoes are pink, but I haven’t cut them in pink yet, they just look so wow in metallics. 

This card is the result of me cutting all my new dies and being left with a stack of die cut shapes I wasn’t really sure what to do with. His Lordship decided to make a conga line of flamingoes, it had him giggling and me inspired.

I simply lay the flamingoes chest to tail across a piece of blue card, 4 looked strange, 5 far too much, so 3 it is. The blue seemed to set them off really well. Paler colours were a bit washed out, black much too harsh. I wanted a very simple design so didn’t try my patterned papers.

I wanted the flamingoes to take centre stage, so cut the card precisely around them, trying to make them pop. I love square cards, so I cut the card the same height 112×112 mm). I simply matted and layered my blue square onto a silver square, another blue square and a final silver square, this leaves a wide white border on the finished card, but I quite like that. I used much thicker borders than my norm, approximately 5mm for each silver layer, 7mm for the middle blue. 

Finally, I chose a silver happy birthday from the pile of precut shapes, but after a lot of muttering and grumbling trying to stick it (it’s gorgeous, but very fiddly) I recut it using a double sided 3d foam sheet on the back for ease of sticking and a touch of depth.

I’m really pleased with this card, much more clean and simple than I usually manage. The blue and silver, and the simplicity, shout male card at me, but can a flamingo be a masculine card decoration?
And a couple of pics:

Kye came to ‘help’ me make Christmas cards with some of the remains of last year’s Kanban foiled card…

And this was the look I got when I dared to try to use a piece of his card